How to Install Outdoor Shower Fixtures

Shower head mounted to a post outside
  • 2-6 hours
  • Intermediate
  • 50-200
What You'll Need
Safety glasses
Work gloves
PVC cutters
Tape measure
Utility knife
PVC primer
PVC glue
9 Ft. pole or post
Post hole diggers

Having outdoor shower fixtures means you can rinse off dirt or pollen rather than taking it indoors. Additionally, the shower head makes a great way to care for young seedlings, giving them a light "rain" each afternoon to promote quick growth. It also provides an easy way to give the dog a bath.

Step 1 - The Layout

In most cases, an outdoor shower head is placed seven to eight feet high. For applications that use cold water only, you can even use a simple, all-metal shower head. Purchase enough PVC pipe to run from the nearest hose bib (faucet), and don't forget to make a list of the different connectors required. At the pole, you will need two, 90-degree couplings, a 45-degree coupling, and a three-way, or "T" coupling. You will also need a valve, but a simple twist-type PVC valve will be sufficient. The final coupling required for the shower pole is a "male" threaded pipe coupling, to attach the shower head.

Step 2 - Trench

The trench for an outdoor shower faucet should be at least six inches deep, but it is safer to go down 12 to 18 inches. Because the line can be disconnected, winter freezing will not be a problem, but it is important to go deep enough to avoid accidentally digging into the pipe.

Step 3 - Install a Support Column

post in a hole

At the shower location, install the shower pole. Dig the hole two feet deep with post hole diggers, and place the post in the hole. Pack the soil around the post. If you want a more secure post, dig the hole four inches wider than the post, and fill around the post with concrete.

Step 4 - Install the Pipe

At the faucet, install a "female" coupling on a section of pipe long enough to reach the hose bib. Install the pipe along the trench. Mark and cut the pipe as you go, and don't forget to use PVC primer to clean the pipe before gluing sections together. At the shower pole, place the valve at around waist level, and use 90-degree elbows at the top and bottom. Strap the PVC to the pole to hold it firmly in place.

Step 5 - Install the Shower

Use an eight-inch section of PVC at the top, with the 45-degree coupling attached. A short piece of PVC is attached to the coupling with the "male" threaded coupling and shower head attaching to that. Even though your pole is only seven feet high, you can extend the pipe above it 12 to 16 inches. Turn on the valve at your shower pole for use. Attach a flexible and removable shower head for versatility.

Step 6 - Winter Draining

If you are not going to be using the outdoor shower regularly, disconnect the "female" adapter from the hose bib. Similarly, you can disconnect the pipe anytime you need to connect an ordinary hose.